Retailers do about 20 percent of their business in the fourth quarter.
Apparently so do thieves.
Last year on the busiest day of the holiday season, United Parcel Service and FedEx moved 55 million packages.
Thieves — including in Manteca — took full advantage of the increased volume.
Snatch and runs of parcels off front doorsteps is one of the latest growing crimes in Manteca and elsewhere.
“They (the criminals) follow delivery trucks and wait until a package is left on a doorstep when the resident doesn’t answer,” noted Police Chief Nick Obligacion.
There are three simple things you can do to avoid being a victim, the police chief.
Have packages sent with the requirement that they must be signed for.
Have items delivered to your workplace.
Have them delivered to an address (a neighbor or a relative) that you know will be home.
Obligacion noted that the usual advice about avoiding being a theft victim applies even more so during the holidays with the big upswing in shopping.
That includes not leaving any item that even remotely looks valuable — even if you cover it up with a towel or such — in view inside your vehicle.
Putting packages in the trunk and then walking back to go to another store without driving your car can be problematic. Thieves often case parking lots looking for people putting items in their trunk who they return to shopping.
To access trunks or rear doors on SUVs and hatchbacks all that is required for most cars is to break the driver’s window and push a button or release the latch.
It can take less than 30 seconds to break a window, pop the trunk, and take off with packages.